Ben Shapiro: The media's big lie about the 'Great Replacement Theory' and conservatism
What evidence did the media provide to the effect that conservatives, broadly writ, had espoused the Great Replacement Theory?
Last week, a racist mass shooter massacred 10 people and wounded three others at a Buffalo, New York, supermarket. The shooter was a white supremacist; his hate-filled 180-page screed about why he had committed the shooting was replete with neo-Nazi sentiments. According to the shooter, he had to slaughter innocent black Americans in order to prevent the white population of the United States from being crowded out. "We are experiencing an invasion on a level never seen before in history," wrote the perverse murderer. "This is ethnic replacement. This is cultural replacement. This is racial replacement. This is WHITE GENOCIDE."
The shooter's theory, generally called the "great replacement theory," suggests that a shadowy cabal of elites, mainly Jewish, have deliberately undermined the racial purity of European countries by facilitating mass immigration and race-mixing. The shooter deliberately quoted the neo-Nazi slogan -- the so-called 14 Words -- "We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children." He called himself a white supremacist, a neo-Nazi and an antisemite. Among the sources for this morally sick belief system, the shooter cited various internet sources, particularly other mass shooters who released similar manifestoes. He did not mention Fox News; he did not mention any mainstream conservative, instead stating, "conservatism is corporatism in disguise, I want no part of it."
None of this mattered to the Left-wing press, which immediately determined that the entire conservative movement was somehow guilty for the mass shooting. The New York Times headlined, "Republicans Play on Fears of 'Great Replacement' in Bid for Base Voters." The Washington Post accused Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., of "echo(ing) racist theory allegedly espoused by Buffalo suspect." The New Republic headlined, "The Great Replacement Theory Is Just Republican Orthodoxy Now."
What evidence did the media provide to the effect that conservatives, broadly writ, had espoused the Great Replacement Theory? They cited the belief among conservatives that the Left is generally friendly toward loose immigration in order to move the country in a progressive manner. Philip Bump of The Washington Post stated that nearly half of Republicans believed in the great replacement theory, citing a Pew poll that found that almost half of Republicans (and more than one in five Democrats) believed that "there is a group of people in this country who are trying to replace native-born Americans with immigrants who agree with their political views."
This, of course, is not the great replacement theory, which centers on racial purity rather than the idea that changing demographics have an effect on political orientation. The latter premise has been taken for granted by the Left for decades (even though it is largely faulty, as changing Hispanic voting patterns demonstrate).
In fact, the Left has often argued in favor of demographic change turning the country bluer: in 2003, John Judis and Ruy Teixeira wrote a book titled "The Emerging Democratic Majority," in which they argued that Democrats were building a new electoral coalition "in which white America is supplanted by multiracial, multiethnic America"; in 2012, Greg Sargent of The Washington Post observed, "The story of this election will be all about demographics... Rather than reverting to the older, whiter, more male version (of America's electorate) Republicans had hoped for, it continues to be defined by what Ron Brownstein has called the 'coalition of the ascendant' -- minorities, young voters, and college educated whites, particularly women"; in 2013, the Center for American Progress stated, "Supporting real immigration reform that contains a pathway to citizenship for our nation's 11 million undocumented immigrants is the only way to maintain electoral strength in the future."
The goal here is obvious: conflate Republican positions with white supremacy in order to drive votes away from them. It's poisonous politics, and it happens to be a lie. But truth is of little or no priority when it comes to Left-wing politics, which are rooted always and forever in the idea that those who oppose their favored policies must be destroyed with any tool at hand.
Ben Shapiro is a nationally syndicated columnist whose work regularly appears in the Grand Forks Herald.